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Messages - a_thousand_hats

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General Ranting / Re: Any Derby FoDders?
« on: December 22, 2014, 04:04:48 PM »
Derby wargames society is alive (even if their site isn't) most of their chatter happens on FB now.

I go every now and again - Mondays and Thursdays are their gaming nights.

The number of guys there on an evening ebbs and flows, there might only be half a dozen on one night yet there might be 40+ another depending on who turns up.

What do you play?


Open Combat isn't designed for modern/sci-fi settings - I have got a 'bare bones' structure of a moderns/sci-fi game in a similar vein to Open Combat (a build your own stats system) but it's a long way off completion. Modern/sci-fi conflict has a different feel to the 'in-your-face-sword-swinging' action you get in pre-gunpowder fantasy and history settings.

The current Open Combat PDF doesn't include an improvement/campaign system - that's going to be an expansion at a later date (the rules do exist in a work-in-progress state so it is moving along).

The core Open Combat rules give you the freedom to fight encounters with any pre-gunpowder minis you fancy putting on the tabletop.


I've recently launched my first skirmish game, it might interest some of you (especially if you're like me and collect all kinds of miniatures from all sorts of places).

The game is called Open Combat and is suitable for fantasy settings (and pre-gunpowder historical periods).

It's small skirmish (you only need 2'x2' area to play) and you can stat your models up any way you like so you can create the statlines and skills/abilities you think best suits your celt fanatic, dwarf warrior or gribblie slug model etc.

You can find out more at

Gav Thorpe (who helped me out during development) did a piece about the game on his blog here.

If you've got any questions let me know.



PS - Cheers for letting me post here Andy - if this is the wrong place, my apologies. I'm sure you can jiggery-pokery it into the right spot. Thanks again to Andy and Kev for agreeing waaaaaayy back in early 2013 for me to include pics of their models within the rules - it's taken a lot longer than I intended to get it finished. More pics (along with links back to your stores) will appear on the blog as I add content to it over the coming weeks and months.

Ideas for New Heresy Models / Re: Hürn MK III
« on: November 15, 2013, 02:35:30 PM »
Ajsalium and trueName make good points - I was aware of the CMON shipping role and that Prodos were involved in something else, couldn't have named warzone without digging though. It's just the strange slightly negative vibe emanating from a few corners of the web I must have been picking up on.

The cost isn't something I'd looked at, having sworn myself off KSs now (I backed two last year), but it does 'look' pricey in comparison to others in the genre. But it is understandable for the materials and licence, 'perception' is everything I guess. If I wanted it I'd be happy to pay the price for resin rather than restic but I think the big giveaway KSs have skewed public expectations.

Be really careful looking at KS as a way of helping your biz sort the dragon out Andy. No need to create an additional rod for your back. I know you must be looking at all possibilities for turning the biz around but I think running a KS when you're clear of the dragon would be far more successive (and less stressful) than running it with the dragon backlog in the background.

(I'll drop you an email in a bit have had an idea for a while that might be worth exploring).

Ideas for New Heresy Models / Re: Hürn MK III
« on: November 15, 2013, 12:21:11 PM »
I think it's reputations that are stalling the uptake on the KS. CMON get quite a bit of grief online about the delivery of KS's they are involved in. Think Prodos may have bit of history which some people seem to have issues with too (dunno what that is just something I've picked up through surfing around the topic).

KS funders in general are certainly more aware of the various issues involved in how KS campaigns are run (and the tricks/techniques used by companies running them) and the issues surrounding delivery so more careful how they put money to things it seems.

Which is only natural - it a maturing marketing/funding device and people are more savvy the more time goes by.

Netherhells / Re: NetherHells: Resurrection
« on: September 19, 2013, 11:20:28 AM »
Depending on how things go over the next two months (finally, after much delay, launching my own skirmish ruleset) I might be able to help you out in some way shape or form. :)

Netherhells / Re: What do you want in a game?
« on: September 17, 2013, 02:07:49 PM »
Didn't know that about Heroquest. Sounds interesting - I imagine it'll make a load on KS though, there's a big nostalgia pull to it for many people.

Netherhells / Re: What do you want in a game?
« on: September 16, 2013, 01:54:01 PM »
If you're going to concentrate on the demonic angle you could play with something along the lines of:

1. Characters have been summoned by the regions Big Cheese to destroy the demonic Big Bad.
2. They are transported by Big Cheese's Grand Wizbanger to the gates of the particular Hell that Big Bad rules over. (It's a one way trip unless they bag Big Bad, the Grand Wizbanger might wrangle a bit of help on the inside with a dodgy demonic pact or too - setting up interesting spin off plots for later expansion. Grand WizBanger has to pay the price for meddling etc. you know the drill).
Anyway... back to the core plot.
3. Characters start the game (first scenario) at the gates of the Hell.
4. Over series of scenarios they battle their way down through the increasingly gribbly levels of Hell to ultimately meet the Big Bad and attempt to kick his ass.
5. They might win but at what cost (see Grand Wizbanger's dodgy pacts to help them) or they may lose, in which case send it another load of heroic types to have a go and play again! :D

I could see it working really well in an Heroquest stylie set-up. The storyline lends itself to all kinds of playing with demonic gribblies and baddies. Plus you can have as many spin-offs as you like as the different Hells that could be embroiled in the mix by Grand Wizbanger trying to help the heroes from the outside.

I'd imagine this help would explained in the form of little demonic emissaries teleporting in with supplies and healing stuff etc. Could even be a between scenario thing.

That's my 2p anyway.


Hasslefree / Re: the growing barbarian gang
« on: July 26, 2013, 05:40:19 PM »

Great looking group - really look ready to lay some hurt down up close and personal.

Heresy / Re: A new Boris for my barbarian gang
« on: June 17, 2013, 01:50:10 PM »
Great bunch of barbarian dudes.

Suggestion for non FOD shaman would be the naked Celt shaman with horns and sickles in Warlord Games' Hail Caesar section.

He'll be smaller framed than the other dudes in your collection but that might work in the context of your warband.

Fenris news / Re: Bronze Age miniatures
« on: March 08, 2013, 11:25:52 AM »
Just ordered the skellies - I paid by paypal - it didn't seem to add shipping in when I went through the order process so I put a note on the paypal 'message to seller bit'. However when the order went through and I got the confirmation from paypal it did add the shipping cost in.

Bit odd - but good that everything went through in the end.


Fenris news / Re: Bronze Age miniatures
« on: February 05, 2013, 04:28:59 PM »
ohhhh.... and there was me telling myself I was going to restrain my purchases to terrain & storage for a few months...

(Think I can hear that particular plan cracking at the seams).

Fenris news / Re: Bronze Age miniatures
« on: February 05, 2013, 01:23:25 PM »
Very cool - I really like some of their stuff.

Are you getting the Greek/Argonaut stylie skellies too?

Ideas for New Heresy Models / Re: Kickstarter?
« on: February 04, 2013, 05:00:55 PM »
A tricky tool is Kickstarter.

I think I'd lean towards Bungle's suggestion (on page 2) to start off testing the process yourself (and get a hopefully successful one under your belt).

Now a bit of a ramble...

If you're really committed to the board game route then you'll have to do a shed load of costs research (including calculating the final package weight for shipping costs - which is a critical factor imho, and difficult to work out with additional pledge options etc.) to make sure you don't end up with a whopping costs overrun in the accounts for the KS which leaves your with next to no profit margin on the whole thing.

I've watched loads of KSs now (backed two) but despite the massive $$/££s being pulled in by them I'm not convinced that, in of themselves, the KSs are actually financially that great for the companies running them. The margins look squeaky tight with all the extras that seem to be the expected 'norm'.

It strikes me that the real benefit of the very big and successful KSs is that they raise awareness of a product. Help it get into production (possibly taking a loss on the initial outlay to fulfil backers pledges/breaking even/or making a bit of money) and then hopefully - allow the company to generate the real profit on the sales of the product through to regular customers/distribution once it has been produced with that initial cost of production paid for by the KS.

The real risk for a small company, to my eyes, is that they just squeak over the money needed to get the project off the ground but then don't get the sales in the wider, 'normal' customer base after KS has blown over. That's why the numbercrunching has to be so very accurate (to cover the small companies back just in case the KS is a flash in the pan).

There is a lot of positives to be taken from running a kickstarter but I think, like any business venture, the devil is in the details - particularly the costs involved.

Running a small one to test the process and then using that experience to inform your planning and development for the 'big one' would be the way to go in my opinion.

Ramble over...

Note: I thought the Reaper one was really interesting - getting them the money to locate plastics production 'in house'. The fact that it may actually have made a loss on the sheer volume of product they've committed to send out (that's me guessing not based on any info) to the backers should be more than made up by the margins they'll be able to generate on future miniature sales having production on site rather than outsourced.

Fenris news / Re: Tiny competition-ette
« on: September 24, 2012, 11:58:24 AM »
One more as it's been rippling through my brain as I got back to work.

Post Apoc = Broken Future or Fractured Land

Fenris news / Re: Tiny competition-ette
« on: September 24, 2012, 11:39:52 AM »
For the timber bases:

Smooth/Plain = Top Deck
Rough/wavy = Lower Deck

Random Fieldstone = Fenrir's Causeway (Fen Dweller + causeways are built to walk through wetlands + it's a nod to your name).

General Ranting / Re: and level up.....
« on: June 01, 2012, 11:56:39 PM »

And now the fun times begin (and time itself will seem to accelerate - before you know what's happening months/years will have flashed by).

Try to enjoy it even when you're worn out through lack of sleep.


General Ranting / Re: Please help my friend's daughter with cancer
« on: May 28, 2012, 10:03:46 PM »
Done - followed the link from inso's blog. Will tweet it myself in a minute.

Announcements and News / Re: Christmas/New Year painting competition
« on: November 21, 2011, 09:53:51 AM »
This sounds like perfect opportunity to get my boys to paint the three little HF jedi dudes  I got for them (we sometimes play the star wars minis game) but we've not got around to sitting down to paint them yet.

Suggestions (HF) / Re: Which of the older ranges to work on first?
« on: January 27, 2010, 11:18:57 AM »
...and just in case you didn't hear...



Not bought any of these little dudes yet but will do if there's a few more of the little fellas. A leader dude and a special weapon type (or two) might be all it needed to tip me over to buying.

Information / Re: Ask Sally
« on: January 22, 2010, 11:21:23 AM »
What ambitions does Hasslefree have, where would you ideally like to see the business in 2 years, in 5 years?

On a related note - do you see any particular range as a growth area that you would like to expand over the next 12 months?

Have you considered developing a game (board, skirmish or wargame) to act as a vehicle to help to promote the Grymn (and other ranges) to those gamers out there that like to have 'rules' specifically for their miniatures?


New wip pics on the dragon WIP page!

 :blink:  :notworthy:

Awesome, just awesome - I think I'm going to need to build a display case especially for it.


Diorama of Doom 2009 (DOD IV) / Re: DOD IV Contest Winners!
« on: December 03, 2009, 12:24:33 PM »

Well done all - I'm pleased the Zombie surfer got a nod of approval - really like that one, but all entries were most excellent (including the ones not shown above).

My vote would have had the top two reversed - but I would have been hard pressed to split them if asked which one should win so I can imagine the difficulty the judges felt.

Kudos for running the comp again FOD head honchos!

DOD IV (2009) Finished Entries! / Re: Hard Days Night....
« on: November 01, 2009, 08:44:05 PM »
 :shock: :jawdrop: bonkers-cool dual level composition - love it! loads going on.

DOD IV (2009) Finished Entries! / Re: 'Sabotage!'
« on: November 01, 2009, 08:40:33 PM »
 :jawdrop: :notworthy: a real 'every angle' piece.


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